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Chinese bookshop salesman faces 7 years in prison for selling bibles

by Sophie Drew

A Chinese bookshop owner will be jailed for seven years for selling Christian books - mainly Bibles. 

Chen Yu, the owner of Wheat Bookstore was sentenced in Linhai City Court, in the Zhejiang province of eastern China. He had sold more than 20,000 books to 10,000 customers before being charged with "illegal business operation". 

In China, it's currently an offence to carry out religious activity without the express permission of authorities. 

Although China recognises Catholicism and Protestantism, many of the books sold were published in the US and Taiwan, and do not necessarily align with the rules and regulations laid out by the Chinese Communist Party. 

Some of those who had purchased the books had their homes raided and belongings taken, according to Free Radio China. 

The country has a long history of mistreating religious groups, prompting countries like the US and the UK to hold a diplomatic boycott of the 2022 Winter Olympic Games in Beijing, which are due to take place in February. 

The books sold by Chen Yu include those written by Pastor Wang Yi, who has been accused of “inciting subversion or state power”. The Pastor was jailed for 9 years in 2019.

Alongside his prison sentence, Chen Yu is being made to pay 200,000 yuan – approximately £23,000.


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